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Local photographer released from hospital after 130 day COVID-19 battle

Published: Mar. 5, 2021 at 11:40 AM CST
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - A well-known photographer in Monroe was finally released from the hospital on Wednesday after a nearly five month battle with COVID-19.

Patty Stewart is the owner of Patty Stewart Photography. She normally spends her time capturing priceless memories. Whether it’s a family portrait, senior announcement, or a celebration, Stewart documents every smile, tear and laugh.

Things have been different for her lately. Since October 26, 2020, she has been fighting for her life at St. Francis Medical Center and now she’s breaking free from the I.V.’s.

“Well, they call me the miracle girl at St. Francis because I shouldn’t have lived,” Stewart said.

She spent 130 days in the hospital, 89 of those on a ventilator. She missed coded three times, suffered two seizures, and both of her lungs collapsed. Furthermore, She woke up from a coma to find she missed Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Stewart called it a grim reality of the seriousness of the virus.

“The point of telling my story is, a lot of people think COVID is, you know, well, if I get it. I get it. And it is, some people have gotten through it without any problems,” Stewart said. “I considered myself healthy. But the doctors told my family, friends when I was in on the ventilator, that I would be brain-damaged. That if I do survive, I’ll be brain-damaged. And that they just didn’t see me making it.”

Stewart still has a long journey ahead of her. She still relies on oxygen and will have to endure physical therapy to get her muscles strengthened. But she says the experience has given her a different outlook on life, a newfound appreciation for things she took for granted.

“I appreciate life more now. It’s emotional. Man, it feels like its uplifted me even,” Stewart said. “You know, and now I’m ready to start working out again. And get back to my life.”

To top it off, Stewart was welcomed home after 130 day to friends and loves one, cheers and signs. It was a joyous homecoming for a COVID-19 survivor.

If you would like to help Stewart out, friends have created a GoFundMe to help with bills and expenses.

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